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Tuscany Portrait Painting Workshop

Learn the Craft of Painting 

Experience the Magic of Tuscany

October 16-31 2024


Nestled amidst the breathtaking Tuscan hills, this immersive 14-day painting experience invites you to embark on a transformative journey guided by esteemed instructors: Nic Thurman, Jannik Hosel, Kristine Onsrud, William Heimdal, and Melissa Calabria.

What We'll Do

Each morning, we gather as a collective to savor coffee and engage in stimulating discussions on the philosophy of painting. Delve deep into the realm of painting techniques through comprehensive lessons, followed by painting a live model, during which you will receive hands-on guidance from the instructors. As the sun sets, nights come alive with spirited drawing competitions, where we gather around a live model, sketching their portrait in intense one-hour sessions.

Day Trips To Florence

Enriching our experience further, we embark on two enlightening tours to Florence, strolling along its enchanting streets and delving into the masterpieces housed at the Uffizi Gallery and Galleria dell'Accademia.

Included With Your Ticket

The price of your ticket includes: Accommodation, Painting Materials, Meals Prepared By Castle Staff, Tours of Florence, Wine Tasting, Daily Lessons, Live Models, and 1-on-1 Guidance. 



Oct 16-30 2024

Oct 16

Welcome Dinner

Scheduled shuttle from Florence Airport to the castle. Find your room, and enjoy a warm welcome dinner where you will meet the instructors and attendees. Begin your journey in this captivating setting. and get ready for an immersive experience. 

Note: Shuttle transportation from Florence to the castle will be provided at a scheduled meeting point.

Oct 17


& Block In

Day 2 begins with an insightful lesson on the materials you'll be working with, gaining a deeper understanding of their qualities and significance in your process. Next, a hands on canvas stretching lesson, where you will get your canvas ready for painting. In the afternoon we will start our first portrait painting from life. 

Oct 18

Oil Ground

& Detailed

Block in

Learn the techniques of mixing oil ground and the intricate process of applying it to your canvas. Gain valuable insights into achieving a smooth and durable surface that will enhance your work. You will start your second portrait painting from life. Building upon the foundations laid on the previous day, you will now delve deeper into capturing the detailed block in of your subject.

Oct 19

Light, Shadow,

& Demos

Prepare for a day filled with inspiration and insights as we delve into this fundamental aspect of form. Gain a deeper understanding of their significance in creating depth, volume, and atmosphere within your work. Continue working on your portraits, incorporating the knowledge and techniques you've acquired. Finally an evening drawing competition.

Oct 20

Color Combos

& Skin Color


You will learn how the Apelles palette works as a harmonious range of colors that can be used to create lively paintings. We will look at examples of masterworks to gain inspiration, learning techniques worth emulating in your own work. More portrait painting sessions from life and a drawing competition! 

Oct 21


& Focus 

Lessons and demonstrations examining emotional expression and focus in paintings. The types of expression and details that offer emotion to the viewer. How to manipulate the focus to enhance drama and realism. Evening drawing competition. 

Oct 22


Day Trip

Walk the enchanting streets, visit the iconic Uffizi Gallery, and explore landmarks like Ponte Vecchio and the Duomo. You will also have an opportunity to shop at Zecchi. Enjoy dinner in Florence, either at a recommended spot or one of your choosing. We'll reconvene and return to the castle by shuttle.

Note: Shuttle transportation is provided. Meals and personal purchases are the participants' responsibility.

Oct 23


& Textural 


A day of learning and hands-on practice as we delve into the techniques that add depth and dimension. Continue working on your portraits, honing your skills and experimenting with different brushstrokes. Engage in a drawing competition. In the evening, indulge in the craft of pasta making.

Oct 24



& Critique

Embark on your 6th painting sessions, where you'll have the chance to apply the techniques and concepts learned throughout the workshop to both of your portraits. With a focus on backgrounds, discover how to create harmonious and cohesive compositions. At night we will gather for a fun tradition, critique with wine! Take this opportunity to receive valuable feedback and insights on your paintings as we approach the final painting sessions.

Oct 25

Final Details

Demonstrations by Kristine and William to help you find the final details and unlock the transformative power of small, subtle touches that elevate your paintings. Receive personal guidance from the instructors as they help you navigate the final stages. At night there will be a drawing competition.

Oct 26-28



& Bumbling

Demonstrations on glazing and final effects that can help to produce enhanced contrast and depth. Discover how carefully applied translucent layers can create a remarkable interplay of light and shadow. Engage in the final painting sessions, putting into practice the techniques learned. 

Oct 29

Firenze pt. 2

In the morning we will be shuttled to Florence where we will spend our day at the Galleria Dell'Accademia di Firenze. After our visit to the gallery, we will have the opportunity to wander through the charming streets of Florence. Discover hidden gems, visit local sites, and indulge in the beauty that surrounds you. We'll reconvene and return to the castle by shuttle.

Note: Shuttle transportation is provided. Meals and personal purchases are the participants' responsibility.

Oct 30





We begin the day with a morning meeting, where we gather to reflect on our journey and engage in a friendly drawing competition. After a satisfying lunch, we venture into a nearby town for a delightful guided wine tasting tour. Immerse yourself in the flavors and aromas of local wines, learning about the artistry and craftsmanship that goes into each bottle. Returning to the castle we will have another drawing competition! We will end the day with a final exhibition where everyone can display their paintings, talk with friends, and receive any final critiques from the instructors. 

Oct 31




On our final day in the castle, we come together for a meaningful morning meeting. This gathering allows us to reflect on our transformative journey, share insights gained, and engage in philosophical discussions that have shaped our perspectives. Together, we seek resolutions and further our understanding of the profound connections between painting, life, and personal growth. You will have time to pack and organize your belongings as we prepare for the end of our enchanting stay. In the evening, we come together once again to continue our discussions and celebrate the culmination of your hard work. Embrace the camaraderie and connection that has blossomed throughout the workshop as we toast to your achievements.

Oct 31


We will have one final breakfast and morning meeting as a group, then a shuttle will take us all to Florence where we will say our final goodbyes. 

The Instructors





Melissa Calabria

Melissa Calabria

Master of Color & Sentimentality

Melisa Calabria is an Argentinian painter born in Buenos Aires, in 1993. She started her studies in IUNA (National Universitary Institute of Arts) and studied at several private workshops at the same time. She became an apprentice and student of Odd Nerdrum´s in 2019, and from 2021 to 2022 she continued her studies there in Norway. Melissa has been a part of many exhibitions and her work is in private collections worldwide.

She has recieved mentions in international contest such as Figurativas Competition (Spain), ARC Salon (USA), Mod Portrait (Spain), Royal Society of Portrait Painters (UK).

Currently she’s working in Buenos Aires, where she teaches in her studio. She is also teaching in workshops internationally.


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Kristine Onsrud

Drawing Inspiration From Rembrandt to Shejerfbeck

Kristine Onsrud is a highly skilled classical painter with influences ranging from Rembrandt to Helene Shejerfbeck. After concluding her BA in Fine Art at Kingston University London she enrolled at the Florence Academy of Art. After completing the standard program, she was awarded the prestigious fourth-year prize. That allowed her to stay at the Florence Academy for an additional year to teach and further develop her own painting practice. 


After leaving Florence, she had the privilege of continuing her journey at the Nerdrum School, where she lived and worked alongside Odd Nerdrum. Kristine went on to the Courtauld Institute of Art, a world-leading center for the study of art history, conservation, and curating, where she furthered her studies and expertise. Kristine has exhibited her work worldwide, and continues to share her knowledge through workshops.



Kristine Onsrud


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William Heimdal

William Heimdal 


William Heimdal, born in 2003 in Norway, is a self-taught classical painter mainly known for his self portraits.


At the age of 16 Heimdal dropped out of school in order to study the techniques of Caravaggio and Rembrandt on his own. He later painted at the Nerdrum School where he was one of the founding members of the Memorosa Group.


Heimdal has been at the forefront of the classical figurative movement in Norway and continues to share his philosophy and knowledge to inspire change. His work has been primarily shown in galleries across Scandinavia and is housed in private collections worldwide. 


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Jannik Hosel

Old Master Obsessed 

Jannik Hosel, a distinguished painter hailing from Germany, now resides and creates in the historic city of Florence, Italy. His work is deeply influenced by the shadowy intensity and complex narratives of the Renaissance and Baroque periods. Jannik delves into the very essence of these masterpieces, striving to understand and reconstruct their foundational layers in his own work.

A notable alumnus of Odd Nerdrum's tutelage, Hosel's philosophy and unwavering commitment to the enduring craft of painting have been significantly shaped by this mentorship. His endeavors are rooted in a desire to weave intricate, compelling stories through his brushstrokes.


Jannik aims at transcending time. Each masterpiece he creates is designed to seize the viewer's attention instantly, weaving a visual narrative so enthralling that it becomes impossible to divert one's gaze. His paintings are not just visual experiences; they are journeys into captivating stories, inviting the viewer to unravel the layers of narrative and emotion embedded within each piece.




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Jannik Hosel



Nic Thurman

Nic Thurman 

Ethereal Enthusiast 

Nic Thurman is an accomplished painter who has dedicated his career to exploring universality in painting . His journey began in 2014 when he had the privilege of receiving mentorship from the acclaimed classicist Jeremy Caniglia. During that time he gained invaluable insights into the principles that distinguish classical painting from its modern counterpart. 


Building upon this strong foundation, Thurman continued his development by becoming a pupil of the renowned master painter Odd Nerdrum from 2018 to 2021. Under Nerdrum's guidance, he honed his skills and deepened his understanding of timeless principles and kitsch philosophy. Thurman was also one of the founding members of the Memorosa Group.

Thurman's unwavering quest for the eternal masterpiece serves as the driving force behind his endeavors, and his dedication to the craft has earned him recognition worldwide. He has participated in exhibitions spanning from New York City to Norway, and his work is collected privately around the globe.


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The Venue

53019 Castelnuovo Berardenga SI


Steeped in over ten centuries of rich history, Castello di Montalto exudes an enchanting tranquility amidst its picturesque surroundings. Nestled within reach of local artisans and vineyards, this extraordinary estate offers a harmonious balance between seclusion and convenience. Located a mere hour from Florence, the estate encompasses vast landscapes adorned with an organic farm, spanning over 200 hectares that produces olive oil, honey and cereals. Immerse yourself in the timeless beauty of Castello di Montalto, where history, nature, and artisanal craftsmanship converge.

The Venue





Where You'll Stay

The Castle offers a variety of accommodations, including numerous villas, each boasting distinctive bedrooms, bathrooms, and inviting common rooms. Your lodging will be determined by the ticket type you select, providing you with a range of options tailored to your preferences. Choose from a luxurious private villa for ultimate privacy, a private bedroom with an en suite bathroom in a shared villa or a shared bedroom with a shared bathroom, fostering a sense of camaraderie and shared experiences. Select the accommodation that best suits your needs and immerse yourself in the unique charm of the Castle.

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